I know that sounds liked a jingle or a slogan for some person or product.
I first heard it remembered out loud in a cheery singsong by Charles Vickery, the seascape painter when he was doing a demonstration in Rockport about 20 years ago. It went by like that, bit I thought "what"? He didn't say it again but I went to work on applying the idea to surf. It is pretty basic, canned, water representing method and has been exploited to a fare-thee-well by our friends the Chi-Coms making lesser priced oils for American homes.
Here above is an example of a passage that was painted with a hard, dark edge at the top, and then "pulled down" or blended to a soft edge on the bottom. I am going somewhere with this, I know that seems pretty mundane and obvious.
Decorative painters doing tole paintings on trays and tinware know and used this transition from a hard line to a soft valley to give the illusion of form in a simple drawing. You may remember the cheap cartoons from a few years ago that were computer rendered to be "airbrush" looking. The hard edge and fade passage is a big part of that "look", or a real airbrush, does anyone still use those?
This is a simple convention based on the actual anatomy of form. It works particularly well on naturally curving or or somewhat transparent forms. Among those forms are clouds and water. Many of you have been taught to lay a note on the canvas and then soften the edge. Thats pretty standard, but what if instead of softening the edge you choose a side of the edge and soften that? Entire passages and areas of a painting may all bear that pulled"edge. Imagine a sky full of dark grey clouds painted hard on the top. soft on the bottom. The convention describes nicely what goes on in clouds, and encodes an idea of their form rather Old paintings are full of those.
More tomorrow on this .